An online petition to name the Birmingham NEC Nightingale hospital after a pioneering nurse has gained more than 140,000 signatures.
Jamaican-Scottish nurse Mary Seacole tended to wounded soldiers during the Crimean War in the mid-19th century.
Petition organisers say naming the hospital after her would be a "major step forward in highlighting the contribution of BAME staff".
The National Exhibition Centre is expected to open in the coming weeks to help cope with pressures on the health service caused by the coronavirus outbreak.
NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens said building new hospitals in "very short order" was an "extraordinary action".
He said he had "given the go-ahead" to more hospitals because this problem is "not just confined to London" and he said there would be “further such hospitals to follow”.
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